I thought I had done a Key Post on this before, but I can't find it. If anyone else finds it, I hope I don't contradict myself too much ( After writing the following, I have found it: http://www.askaboutmoney.com/showthread.php?t=6805) This is a work in progress, so comments and corrections welcome. Tax Treatment ISEQ ETFs Dividends are subject to 20% tax with no further tax liability due. Profits on disposal will be taxed at 23% Unit linked funds Exit tax of 23% As the dividends are paid out each year, the tax is paid each year. With the Unit linked funds, the fund grows tax free. So there is no real difference between them. Direct holding in shares Dividends taxed at marginal rate - which is 46% for most people Capital Gains taxed at 20% First €1270 of gains exempt from CGT each year No CGT payable if you die Initial costs 1% stamp duty on shares - no stamp duty on ETFs or unit linked funds Commission on buying and selling ETFs and shares - up to 1.5% each way. Many unit linked funds available with no initial or exit charges e.g. Quinn Life. Annual costs None for shares .5% for ISEQ ETF - now charging 1.9% as of May 2009 1% for Quinn Life Unit fund ( other funds may be cheaper for very large amounts) Diversification Unit linked funds are most easily diversified in that you can allocate your money over many different funds e.g. Irish and European Administration Shares require some administration e.g. tax returns, dealing with scrip issues etc.